What’s next in the retail market
In spite of, or perhaps because of, the well-known challenges facing the retail sector, the next few years are looking pretty good for AV investment.
Increased competition and the desire to create memorable ‘experience’-type stores are leading many retailers to commit to sizeable AV projects. Hence the latest AVIXA IOTA report predicts total revenue of $21.2 billion for 2023, with a compound annual growth rate of 6.2% through until 2028.
Video displays remain the most important single technology-oriented contributor to spending (26% of revenues), although services now account for the greatest single share (29%), reflecting a desire by retailers for long-term support of what may be complex AV installations.
One clear trend in terms of digital signage is the move away from static displays to interactive offerings. Once a consumer has been enticed by relevant content – perhaps targeted through the integration of sensors and built-in cameras – they’re more likely to remain engaged if they can interact with that content. Touchscreens remain a popular choice, but enabling people to use their own smartphones is on the rise.
Digital signage technology also provides retailers with information on conversions, shopper viewing habits, and how they behave in a physical store. This data is certain to become more important going forward as retailers seek extra points of differentiation.
In fashion stores, the use of displays is also spreading into technologies such as digital mannequins and interactive mirrors, where shoppers can try on clothes virtually and see items in a more realistic setting. One step beyond this, 3D holographic signage is on the horizon and is said to significantly improve dwell time and trigger positive emotions.
Video walls are also helping to immerse consumers in the shopping experience. 4K, super thin and curved screens are being used to provide eye-catching focal points in store, or to attract and entertain browsers. Expect to also see more transparent LED displays in the future.
Contactless shopping is another growth area, particularly in the grocery sector, utilising advances such as augmented reality, machine learning and computer vision. Products can also be tracked via sensors so buyers can be automatically charged without having to wait in a queue. Future developments could include digital assistants and navigation tools to guide shoppers to the right product, and more QR codes to provide additional product information quickly. In addition, expect to see more ways in which in-store digital and personal devices can be merged.
Where do I find the most important companies in retail at ISE 2024?
The first stop for visitors interested in the retail sector should be the Digital Signage & DooH Zone in Hall 6. Here you’ll find big names such as Brightsign, Intuiface, Infinitus, Yodeck and Scala. An effective retail strategy often involves more than digital signage, so other technology with relevance to the sector is on show elsewhere across the Fira. Absen, Barco, Leyard, LG Electronics, Philips Professional Displays and HYPERVSN are among the names showcasing the latest display technologies in Hall 3. Barix in Hall 7 is known for its retail audio products powering audio streaming, in-store announcements and ad delivery, while B-Tech, Vogel’s and Arthur Holm – all to be found in Hall 3 – are among the companies offering those all-important screen mounts.